Indigenising the curriculum: transcending Australian geography’s dark past
Williams, S and Anders, R and Vreugdenhil, R and Byrne, J, Indigenising the curriculum: transcending Australian geography's dark past, Geographical Research Article 12369. ISSN 1745-5863 (2021) [Refereed Article]
Australian geography has been implicated in the White settler colonial project, including in the dispossession of Aboriginal peoples from their lands and the denigration of Aboriginal knowledges. Recognising the harm caused by this racist past is crucial if geography education is to play a stronger role in decolonisation. Much work is already underway. This article reports on a process to Indigenise the curriculum, building a partnership between Aboriginal people and Australian geography educators at the University of Tasmania. Tasmanian geographers and spatial scientists have begun working with Aboriginal people to come to terms with the discipline’s history of genocide, dispossession and cultural politics of extinction. A workshop that was the foundation for this process generated valuable insights into how to include the knowledge and practices of Aboriginal peoples in geography and planning curricula; build communities of practice; and learn to live lawfully and lore-fully on Country. Lessons learned have informed curriculum renewal and are helping to build new relationships.